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Stoudamire enters plea

Portland Trail Blazer guard Damon Stoudamire has pleaded not guilty to drug possession and paraphernalia charges in Arizona.

Stoudamire's Portland attorney, Stephen Houze, entered the agreement last week by letter to the Tucson Justice Court. A trial date could be set within the next 45 to 60 days, according to Rick Unklesbay, assistant Pima County prosecutor.

Stoudamire was arrested with approximately 1 1/2 ounces of marijuana and rolling papers at the Tucson International Airport on July 3.

Although the Arizona charges are misdemeanors, they could result in a jail term in Washington: After being arrested for drug charges in that state in November, Stoudamire pleaded not guilty. Although he was not convicted of the charges, he struck an agreement with the court requiring him to stay out of trouble for a year.

After the Arizona arrest, the Trail Blazers fined Stoudamire $250,000. The players union is appealing the fine.

Ñ Jim Redden